'Rumba identifies Cuba, all music is born from it'
By Jan Fairley for The Scotsman
"CUBANS were born by the drum," says Roberto ‘Tķo’ Molina, the man who has brought together the great group of Cuban rumberos for the ‘Rumba Del Siglo’, a project born in 1998 when dancer Molina was in his seven days of becoming a Santero priest of the Afro-Cuban Santerķa religion.
If you go to Havana today, apart from tourist venues, forget the evergreen romance of the Buena Vista Social Club. The scene pulsates around rumba, the music born in the docks of Havana and Matanzas during slave times. In their free time, workers would throw a party, singing, dancing and making rhythms on open-sided boxes and anything else to hand.
It is rumba that has fed the controversial ‘timba’ music of the 1990s, which has dealt with street-cred themes of the importance of popular religion and the impact of tourism. To this end Molina brings one of the most interesting Cuban rap groups, husband-and-wife team Alexei and Magia, known as Obsesión, who, over a rumba base, rap about sexism and how "macho" Cuban life can be. click for more